A Platform for a Powerful Voice
After my father passed away suddenly, Poetry Out Loud gave me a link to connect to others with. It gave me the empowerment to confidently and unapologetically exist. It let me speak with my own voice. I will never, in my entire life, forget this organization and all of the people who created it. Without it, I solidly feel as though I would still be lost. I would feel as though my thoughts were not worth sharing, that my existence STILL had to be apologized for. I owe everything to Poetry Out Loud and I owe everything to art.
Storm the Barricades! But, which ones?
Content sponsored by University of Massachusetts Amherst Arts Extension Service.
Advocacy is fundamental to building a vibrant and lasting cultural community. In our chapter on advocacy in “Fundamentals of Arts Management,” published by the UMass Amherst Arts Extension Service, you will learn the ins and outs of arts advocacy from creating strategy, to building alliances, to the details and protocol of conducting a meeting with an elected official.
From Jobs to Dinner to Even Milking Cows, the Nonprofit Arts Are a Multi-Faceted Economic Powerhouse
In 2015, Americans for the Arts set out to determine the economic impact of the nonprofit arts industry through Arts & Economic Prosperity® 5 (AEP5), the largest national study of its kind. It has been five years since the last such study, which came shortly after the Great Recession. We focused on 341 regions representing all 50 states and the District of Columbia, including 14,439 arts and cultural organizations, and an extraordinary 212,691 audience members. Surveys were collected throughout 2016, and results were revealed June 17 at Americans for the Arts’ Annual Convention in San Francisco. The numbers are remarkable.
Arts & Economic Prosperity 5: How the Nonprofit Arts & Culture Industry Impacts the Economy
When recently asked how best to advocate for the arts in the current environment, U.S. Senator Tom Udall (NM)—co-chair of the Senate Cultural Caucus and chief sponsor of the CREATE Act—was unequivocal: “Start by telling every one of your Senators about the economic benefits of the arts.” This familiar refrain is one we have heard for decades from city council chambers to governor mansions to the halls of Congress—and it works. Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 does just that. It changes the conversation about the arts from that of a “charity” to one about an “industry” that provides both cultural and economic benefits to the community.
6 Ways Millennials are Changing Charitable Giving
Data shows that millennials are just as generous as previous generations. But when it comes to how they give, their means and methods are significantly different.
Arts Teachers Crave High Quality Professional Development
For the past year I have been traveling around the state of Ohio providing arts assessment professional development sessions to arts teachers, as a part of the Ohio Arts Assessment Collaborative. What we have discovered is that teachers, whether in large urban districts or small rural districts, all crave the same thing: They want to learn new skills to take back to their classrooms and to be able to connect with like-minded colleagues. They are typically enthusiastic to have a workshop in their content area with materials that they can apply immediately. They want to soak up as much knowledge as they can.
Why Longevity (in a Job!) is Good
Are people staying in their jobs for shorter periods of time? Not according to the Department of Labor Statistics reports, which say that tenures in jobs actually increased slightly during the past decade. But it is true that younger workers (25 to 44 years old) only have a median tenure of about 5 years, compared to older workers (46 and up), whose median tenure is 8 to 10 years. And although those employed in the public sector tend to stay longer than those in the private sector, I still seem to be a statistical outlier. I’ve stayed in my job for 25 years (wow, that’s a long time!). Here’s why you should think about staying in your job.
Artists’ works—and thinking.
Sometimes the most innovative and successful solutions come from collaborating with those who do not think the way you do. This is what practitioners in the Pacific Northwest have been willing to do since the beginning of public art programs in the region. The thinking and unique perspectives of artists have been valued as much as or more than the objects they may produce.
Audience Demographics: The Complexities of Intersectionality
As an organization that has always been led by a majority of queer people of color, I knew that the National Queer Arts Festival (NQAF) survey needed to be able to capture the unique intersections of the organization’s artists and audiences. I also knew that I wouldn’t be able to neatly categorize the complexity of queer identity … but I could try. The underlying principle of the survey and its synthesis needed to be rooted in multiplicity and intersectionality; to allow complex gender and sexual identity to be celebrated rather than stripped down to fit into a single box.
Strategizing on the Future of the Creative Workforce
A recent publication, the Future of Jobs Report, aimed to alert those leaders about current stock of knowledge around anticipated skills needs, recruitment patterns, and occupational requirements on labor market from the perspective of some of the world’s largest employers. Both Creativity and Cognitive Flexibility made the list of top 10 skills. This is great news for education where the arts are present, since they are the springboard of creativity, innovation, and cognitive flexibility; but strategy to implement arts-infused curricula more fully in public education is needed to educate the workforce of the future. The call for strategic local arts advocacy is warranted.
Thanks and Gratitude for My Arts Advocacy Village
I have worked with hundreds of volunteers, be they board members, letter stuffers, wine servers, budget testimony panelists, and more. We do not achieve status as members of the “beloved community” by singing our own praises, and ignoring the commitment and dedication of those who volunteer their time with us. We do not achieve this by saying “our doors are open to all” and then sitting inside those open doors and waiting for “them” to come. Without those who give of their time and resources freely, we are nothing but another cog in a wheel.